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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Pulses can help!
Article Type: Food facts From: Nutrition & Food Science, Volume 42, Issue 2
Managing coeliac disease is difficult, but adding pulses to the diet can make this process easier, tastier and more affordable. Coeliac disease is a diet-limiting condition that affects one in 133 people around the world. Pulses and pulse ingredients are gluten-free and easy to use in many recipes including baked goods, snacks and meals. Since coeliac disease has no known cure, a strict gluten-free diet is the only way to manage the disorder. Gluten-free pulses (dried peas, beans, lentils and chickpeas) and pulse ingredients are an excellent meal option for those with any level of gluten intolerance. Many readily available gluten-free products are made with refined flours and starches that can be low in fibre, protein, iron, B vitamins and other nutrients. Adding pulses to a gluten-free diet can boost the nutritional quality of these foods because pulses are rich in fibre, protein, vitamins and minerals.
Pulse Canada released Pulses and the Gluten-Free Diet: Cooking with Beans, Peas, Lentils and Chickpeas, a resource booklet that includes 26 gluten-free recipes that are tasty, nutritious and easy to make at home. The booklet is available as a free download from the Pulse Canada.
Canada’s Food Guide recommends eating beans and lentils often as an alternative to meat products. One serving of pulses is about 3/4 cup, about the size of a tennis ball. Eating more pulses is good for the planet too. Pulses have a lower carbon footprint than other annual crops because they use solar power to transform atmospheric nitrogen into a plant available form. This means pulses virtually create their own fertilizer, which reduces the amount of energy required to make them grow and creates fewer greenhouse gases.